Cancer strikes more than 1.8 million Americans each year, according to the National Cancer Institute. Of those, some 5-10% are because of inherited genetic mutations.
A type of testing known as genetic testing for hereditary cancer can tell you whether you have certain genetic mutations that may predispose you to developing certain kinds of cancer.
Here at Associates in Women’s Health in Cincinnati, our team of care providers performs genetic testing for hereditary cancers. Read on to learn about this testing, including the benefits of learning about your cancer risk.
About genetic testing
A few types of cancer run in families. This may occur because of inherited changes (mutations) that may be passed down from generation to generation.
Genetic testing can find some of these inherited changes. Knowing that you have an inherited mutation doesn’t mean you’ll definitely develop that type of cancer, but it does mean you may have an elevated risk of getting it.
At Associates in Women’s Health, we offer the Myriad myRisk® Hereditary Cancer test. Myriad myRisk is one of the most comprehensive hereditary cancer risk detectors on the market.
Myriad myRisk identifies an elevated risk of eight cancers:
What to expect
Before having a hereditary cancer test, your provider talks with you about your personal and family cancer history and answers any questions you may have about genetic testing or your own cancer risk.
The test itself is simple: It requires only a small amount of blood or saliva.
After performing the test, your provider sends it to Myriad for laboratory analysis. Generally, it takes about two weeks or so for your test to be processed.
Benefits of testing
Once your test results are available, your provider discusses them with you. If necessary, your provider may recommend other types of testing, screening, or follow-up with cancer specialists.
Your provider works closely with you to use your test results to make important decisions about your health and your cancer risk. For example, if testing shows an elevated risk of breast cancer, your provider may recommend earlier or more frequent mammograms.
Knowing that you have an elevated cancer risk also allows you to make lifestyle choices that may help protect your health, such as quitting smoking or cutting back on alcohol intake.
Learn more about genetic testing
The caring, experienced providers at Associates in Women’s Health want to help you take all the steps necessary to protect yourself from cancer and a full range of other health conditions. To schedule an appointment with one of our providers, call our office at 513-794-1500, or request an appointment today.